Manufacturer Musings: Marwan Al-Habbal, Matrox Video
Marwan Al-Habbal of Matrox Video believes we'll be seeing an IP-based shift for everything in the industry.
Name: Marwan Al-Habbal
Job title: Product manager
Company: Matrox Video
Number of IBCs you’ve attended? 9
What do you think will be the big technology trends at this year’s IBC?
We’ll be seeing an IP-based shift for everything. The idea of infrastructure being virtualised appeals to a lot of people, and for good reason. With high speed connections available already, there’s no need to reinvent the wheel. By allowing others to host infrastructure both heavy equipment/capital investments are avoided and projects are completed quicker.
What will your company be highlighting at IBC?
As I mentioned earlier, IP will be seen everywhere this IBC and it just happens to be one of the highlights of our booth. The Matrox X.mio3 IP was specifically designed to allow our OEMs meet the challenges of the SDI-to-IP transition. Through firmware updates, we aim to provide a simple upgrade path, tackling the seemingly endless stream of emerging IP protocols and encapsulations. We are active members of AIMS, SMPTE, ASPEN and Sony IP, and as such our interoperable products will also be shown at booths around IBC as well.
Also in our developer line, we’re introducing a multi-channel 12G SDI product and high density, multi-channel H.264 codec cards to address 4K compression and decompression — including Sony XAVC and Panasonic AVC-Ultra production codecs — helping deployments like production trucks make 4K workflows as simple as HD.
We’ll also have our new Monarch LCS lecture capture appliance on display for the first time in Europe. This is exciting for us because we know that education, both in person and remote, is demanding more connectivity and media. We designed a system that can simultaneously capture and stream two sources, for example, a camera feed of lecturer and computer displaying slides. Students receiving the feeds can review all the required information with out compromising the lecture experience. Only now, it’s available on demand.
What do you think is the biggest challenge facing the TV industry right now?
With so many new entries into the media market from non-traditional broadcasters, there is an overwhelming amount of content out there. Streaming services and specialty cable networks are producing so much content. Viewers are becoming extremely sophisticated, so to win their limited attention, quality is key, whether that means content quality, or production quality, or both.
Given that the RAI is two meters below sea level, what is your business doing to address climate change?
With Matrox based in Canada, we’ve been seeing the effects of climate change first hand on the length and ferocity of our seasons.
For the past decade at least we’ve been moving toward environmentally positive operational practices including lowering overall electrical usage in all of our offices/facilities, decreasing paper and disposable product use, waste reduction, and a strong focus on improving the efficiency and effectiveness of our team.
What are your top tips for trade show survival?
Rent a bike! After a long day at the show, the trams are packed, and riding from the convention centre to the hotel is a time to let your mind unwind without navigating the city on a crowded public transit system. Just remember, do as the locals do and ride like the experienced Amsterdammers.
Your favourite place(s) in Amsterdam to unwind and why?
There are some great Southeast Asian places in Amsterdam. I’d say that the Indonesian and Thai food here is the best outside of Asia. However, I’m going to leave it at that because they’re hidden gems, and unwinding is easier without a crowd.